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U.S. Senate opens the impeachment trial against DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas

UPDATE: The Senate voted 51-49 to adjourn the impeachment trial against Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

The vote now ends the Senate impeachment trial against Mayorkas over his handling of the southern border.

Senate Democrats argued that both articles of impeachment were unconstitutional because they did not rise to the level of "high crimes and misdemeanors."

Republicans raised several motions to try to keep the trial going, but they all failed and the trial was adjourned.

67 votes were needed to remove Mayorkas from office.

The House impeached Mayorkas in February, and on Tuesday, formally referred the issue to the Senate for a trial.

Following the adjournment, Senator Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) issued a statement saying:

"For decades, Arizona has paid the price for the federal government’s failure to do its job – and for years, I have been clear about my serious policy disagreements over the Administration’s failure to secure the border. However, under our Constitution, serious and honest policy disagreements do not meet the constitutional standard for impeachment – high crimes and misdemeanors. Attempting to change that standard is dangerous for our democracy.

Arizona’s border is in crisis – and politicians in Washington continue to use the border crisis for their political gain. I provided a solution to the border crisis, but partisans in Washington decided not to secure the border. Arizona deserves better."

WASHINGTON (NBC, KYMA/KECY) - The Senate has convened the impeachment trial of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, swearing in senators as jurors on Wednesday seek a quick dismissal.

This comes after the House narrowly voted in February to impeach Mayorkas for his handling of the border.

House impeachment managers delivered the charges to the Senate on Tuesday.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer initially announced a plan calling for two hours of debate, among other concessions to Republicans, but that raised an objection from the right.

Schumer then moved to have the trial dismissed quickly, arguing that House Republicans' two impeachment articles "fail to meet the high standard of high crimes and misdemeanors."

The Democrats won a vote on the first article of impeachment being unconstitutional 51-48.

While most Republicans oppose quick dismissal, some have hinted they could vote with Democrats.

Democrats say that instead of impeaching Mayorkas, Republicans should have accepted a bipartisan Senate compromise aimed at reducing the number of migrants who come into the U.S. illegally.

Senator Patty Murray of Washington, who is President Pro Tempore of the Senate, is presiding over the process.

Article Topic Follows: National Politics

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